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Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Why Fred Warner is ‘hyped’ for 49ers’ home opener

May 28, 2024 at 1:33 PM

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The San Francisco 49ers drafted Fred Warner in 2018, and since then, he has emerged as one of the NFL's premier linebackers and the cornerstone of a formidable defense. Warner's impact on the field has been profound, but this year's season opener holds a unique significance for him.

Warner began his rookie season on the road, a trend that continued in 2019, 2021, 2022, and 2023. San Francisco will kick off their 2024 season by hosting the New York Jets on Monday, September 9, at Levi's Stadium, with a crowd of enthusiastic fans in attendance.

For Warner, this Week 1 contest holds special meaning. Speaking to Sirius XM NFL Radio, the linebacker shared his excitement for the matchup against the Jets.

"I was hyped, I was excited," Warner said about the home opener. "I just now found out that this will be the first time in my career that I played at home for a season opener in front of fans."

Warner did play at home to open the 2020 season, but due to COVID restrictions, the 49ers had to play without fans at Levi's Stadium, a strange experience for players who are used to using the crowd's excitement to fuel their performance. The empty stands created an eerie atmosphere, stripping away the energy and support that typically accompanies home games.

Reflecting on the upcoming game, Warner said, "But for us to play at home on Monday Night Football, against a really good football team, one that has a lot of different people and players that we're familiar with, it's going to be so fun. I can't wait."

DraftKings Sportsbook lists the 49ers as 5.5-point favorites in the Monday night matchup. The game will feature quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who once held a grudge against the Bay Area team for passing over him in the NFL Draft, and head coach Robert Saleh, San Francisco's former defensive coordinator, looking to upset the home team.
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